Fearsome Giant, Fearless Child

The story of a child confronting a man-eating giant or witch is told the world over. These heroes go by many names and might be normal in size or no bigger than a thumb. Though they’re often scorned for being the youngest and smallest, they’re well-armed with cleverness and courage. In this companion to Glass Slipper, Gold Sandal, Newbery Medal winner Paul Fleischman and illustrator Julie Paschkis combine elements of this story from different traditions Jack and the Beanstalk, Tom Thumb, Kihuo, Vasilisa to create one narrative, one complete picture of a small boy’s triumph.

I Am Thomas

The author of “Mahtab’s Story” and the author of “The Island “team up to bring young readers another powerful social justice-related work–an inspiring, thought-provoking picture book about finding one’s way in the world “”You must do as you’re told.”””” “”Let the army make you a man.”””” “”Your country needs your vote.”” As the voices in his life crowd in on him, Thomas looks for another way, refusing to conform to the expectations and demands of family and community. A loner, Thomas refuses to feel lonely, an inspiring choice in this masterful tale of questioning authority and resisting oppression. Powerful illustrations and a spare text make a parable of Thomas’s journey, which reflects the courage we all need to find our passion and be ourselves.

See the review at WOW Review, Volume 4, Issue 2

Wait For Me

Mina is the perfect daughter. Bound for Harvard, president of the honor society, straight A student, all while she works at her family’s dry cleaners and helps care for her hearing-impaired little sister. On the outside, Mina does everything right. On the inside, Mina knows the truth. Her life is a lie. At the height of a heat wave, the summer before her senior year, Mina meets the one person to whom she cannot lie. Ysrael, a young migrant worker who dreams of becoming a musician, comes to work at the dry cleaners and asks Mina the one question that scares her the most. What does she want? Mina finds herself torn between living her mother’s dreams, caring for her younger sister, grasping the love that Ysrael offers, and the most difficult of all, living a life that is true. With sensitivity and grace, An Na weaves an intriguing story of a young woman caught in the threads of secrets and lies, struggling for love and finding a voice of her own.